Editorialist: Despite the importance it seems to have in our lives, money does not really exist. This is evident fro...

Anthony on December 17, 2020

Confused

Read the explanation but still having a hard time connecting the dots. So the missing premise is, If something exists and people don't believe in it anymore it would still exist. This is the missing premise because the argument says that money only exists because people believe in it therefore it exists. So if society stopped believing in money it would not longer exist, moreover it only exists from society's belief in it?? yea sounds like a brain teaser but is that somewhat correct?

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Shunhe on December 21, 2020

Hi @Anthony-Resendes,

Thanks for the question! So let’s figure out what this argument is saying first and what the conclusion even is, before figuring out what we need to add to the argument to get to the conclusion. Luckily, the first sentence is the conclusion: money doesn’t actually exist. Why? Because if we stopped believing in it, it’d disappear. That’s the tl;dr of this entire passage. So what do we need to connect the premise (we stop believing in it, so it disappears) to the conclusion (it doesn’t actually exist)? Something that says something along the lines of, “if something disappears when we stop believing in it, then it doesn’t actually exist.” Because then money would be an example of that. And that’s what (A) basically says.

Hope this helps! Feel free to ask any other questions that you might have.

Anthony on June 11, 2021

@Shunhe I'm sorry but still confused. Money doesn't really exist because if society stopped believing in it, it would no longer exist. I just don't understand how if something that exists would continue to exist even if everyone would stop believing in it? The passage says that money exists only because of someone's belief in it, however how is something that exists regardless if everyone stops believing in it the missing premise? I just can't seem the make the connection.

on June 14, 2021

Conclusion: money doesn't exist
Premise: Loss of belief --> Disappears

Do you see the gap? It's super subtle and I think that's why this is so hard, but we make no mention of existence. We need to bridge the gap by saying "Disappears --> doesn't exist" for the conclusion to follow; in other words, if you disappear, then you don't exist. Choice (A) is just the contrapositive, if something does exist, then it doesn't disappear ("continues to exist".